Hip Replacement

Are There Alternatives To Hip Replacement?

Each individual contemplating hip replacement should review alternativdes with his or her physician to determine possible options. Some alternatives to hip replacement include:


Often pain can be controlled with medication adequately enough to provide comfort with the person’s present activity level i.e. the person can still comfortably manage their day to day activities or manage at work. If this is the situation, then the decision to delay is the best option. 


Appropriate exercises to strengthen the hip and knee joint muscles may be helpful enough to reduce the pain and allow surgery to be delayed. But eventually, the person will likely come to surgery


Supplements have become common these days in an attempt to reduce the joint pain. Some people say there pain is greatly helped; others say they find no benefit. Popular supplements include glucoseamine, chondroitin and omega 3 fatty acids. Science does not really support their use as a formal treatment for hip pain.

Injections into the hip

These are experimental. Some find these helpful others not at all. They include hyaluronic acid, platelet-rich plasma, or stem cells. These particular injections are however mostly offered for osteoarthritis of the knee not the hip. Steroid injections into joints with painful arthritis are common amongst some doctors but one cautions against these injections as, while they do reduce inflammation and so may reduce the pain, the do weaken the cartilage and therefore actually make the condition worse. Therefore, they should not be offered in early to mid stages of arthritis, and infrequently in later stages.

Femoral Osteotomy and Arthrodesis

These are operations that were performend before hip replacement was popularized and are essentially no longer offered unless special circumstances require these procedures. A femoral osteotomy realigns the femur which affects the fit of the head into the socket and so may alleviate the pain. It is not anything as successful as a hip replacement in terms of eliminating the pain. An arthrodesis relieves the pain by fusing the hip joint. Therefore the hip joint can no longer move. Most patients prefer to avoid this situation but it is very successful in resolving the hip pain.


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